The chatbot industry is like the gold rush. Everyone is talking about it right now. Everyone wants their piece. Everyone wants to get involved.
As part of a company that has been building and selling chatbots for many years, I have some insights for the newbies. In this article, I want to give you a few tips on picking the right industry for you.
If you have affinities or specific knowledge, focus on these. If you are lost and not quite sure where to start, follow this article. I will talk you through four industries I believe to be the best ones to start deploying chatbots for.
Let's get started.
Selling chatbots to the food industry
Restaurants are perfect for small-scale chatbot automation. They tend to have a few set-in-stone bits of information everyone asks about. Think of questions like 'do you have high chairs for my child?', 'do you serve vegan dishes?', or 'do you have parking available?'.
These are all questions most restaurants have to answer to every day. Offer to automate these via an on-site or Facebook Messenger (in the West) chatbot, and you are golden.
Taking it one step further, you can easily offer to upgrade their chatbot to handle menus and table reservations.
Selling chatbots to the motor industry
Have you ever phoned a garage about a car issue? If you haven't, allow me to show you how the interaction goes.
Me: hi, ahem... I have something wrong with my car... I think?
Them: hi, yep, can you explain?
Me: suuuure... the... ahem... engine is making this weird noise and...
Them: just bring it in today, I'll have a look.
Me: *wiping sweat off forehead* oh great thank you.
For most people, explaining what they think is wrong with their car is impossible. What do we do then? We book an appointment. Perfect for a chatbot.
Pitch a chatbot that will take these bookings straight from their website. Avoiding these time-consuming phone interactions should be the only motivation they need.
Universities are a great place to start pitching chatbots. New students have tonnes of questions about where classes are, who the teacher is, what social events are going and where etc.
Student unions know the answer to all these but don't have time to talk to every student. Pitch your chatbot to universities with an additional layer of education and prevention. This is a lot more than a chatbot. It's a safe place for students to ask questions, safely and anonymously.
Make sure you keep student privacy in mind. This will be the university's first question about your chatbot. 'What about the privacy of our students?' You must have an answer (we can give you all the data protection, legal and security information you need).
Selling chatbots to mid-size businesses
Now we are moving to more operational-type chatbots. In this instance, the most popular product is internal company-facing chatbots. Your best bet will be to focus on HR.
Most mid-size companies (100-1,000 employees) are starting to see inefficiencies in communication. Typically, the company will grow the parts of the business that bring in the money (sales, marketing, etc.) first. HR lags behind and often struggles to keep up with growth.
That is where you can swoop in.
Offer to automate the response to their most common HR enquiries. The low-hanging fruit is where the money is at, for you and for them.
Get to work!
Now you have these at hand, it is time to get to work. Put together a pitch plan, build a list of prospects, and start engaging.
You will learn a lot as you go along. You may even find you should focus on just one of these industries rather than spread your efforts.
Anything fun coming out of these first meetings? Tell us!